If  ever I get featured in a celebrity magazine and someone asks me ” What is your favorite kitchen gadget you can’t do without?”, I will answer ” my electric rice cooker” without a blink. Gifted to me 19 years back as a wedding gift by my close school friends, it has been a mute witness to my struggles in the kitchen from a newbie stage. I have used it every single day I made a meal at home and hence qualifies to take the special place in the kitchen and my heart.

I have often wondered how many manage without an electric cooker! Everyone at home are now so used to the flowery texture of the fragrant rice made in an electric cooker that they hate the glutinous packed cakes that the rice becomes when made in the pressure cooker. Yes! the electric cooker has spoiled us for good.

Not many are aware that the whole process of making rice in the electric way is liberating. Add the measured water, switch it on and you can leave your home or take a shower. What more? it automatically coverts to ‘keep warm’ mode once the cooking is done. No need to stand by it counting the whistles or requesting your hubby or kids to do so when you are out of the scene. Not to forget that if you take the second option, invariably the safety valve has to be replaced!

I would say people don’t consider it a multipurpose appliance just because of the word ‘rice’ tagged to it. Can it cook anything else, of course yes! It has an advantage too. You can open and check how well it has cooked in between. Have you tried cooking your moong sprouts slightly for your salad in a pressure cooker? I have landed with a mushy mass every time. Thanks to my electric ware,  I can control the time of cooking with the water I add in the side to help me cook things to the perfect bite.

One thing that puts off anyone from using the electric rice cooker is the dry crust formed at the bottom. Avoid using the vessel to cook directly. Add the required amount of water to cook in the vessel given with the cooker and add your rice and water in another vessel and place it in the water. No crusts and cleaning problems. Take the vessel with cooked rice out and your cooker is now free for cooking your veggies too. It is an unavoidable item while packing for a holiday when we use service apartments. With the rice, veggies and curds, do you need any other comfort food ?

When my ten year old daughter called me up  the other day  from home asking me if she can cook the rice and keep it ready for dinner by the time I returned, I did realize that my favorite piece in the kitchen was teaching my daughter some lessons in independence and self-confidence.